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May 5, 2014 12:47 AM by Sam Salzwedel

Families of teens killed by BP agents vow to work together

TUCSON - Families of people killed by Border Patrol agents are hoping to work together to demand accountability.

Ana Ceja's nephew, Jose Antonio Elena Rodriguez, was killed by Border Patrol in Nogales, Sonora in 2012. Because the shooting is still under investigation, Customs and Border Protection has only said it is cooperating with the FBI.

Recently, Ceja met the mother of Carlos Lamadrid. He was killed by Border Patrol in Douglas in 2011.

"I feel so bad for all the families," Ceja said. "Because we are in the same pain."

The Department of Justice finished the Lamadrid investigation and said there is no grounds for a criminal prosecution.

Lamadrid's mother, Guadalupe Guerrero, said she does not like fighting the government because it reminds her of what happened. But working with Ceja gives her strength.

The Southern Border Communities Coalition reports Customs and Border Protection has killed 28 people since 2010. They include the friendly-fire death of Agent Nicholas Ivie and an apparent off-duty domestic violence homicide in their numbers.

Ceja and Guerrero hope to find some of those other families to join them to make their voices stronger. In both of their family members' deaths, agents said they fired their weapons because of rock throwers.

"I hope the government listens to us and changes the laws," Ceja said.

Customs and Border Protection had not responded to a request for a statement in time for this report.


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